The New York Islanders fan base has prayed and pleaded, protested and petitioned - remember the billboard- for the team's ownership to have change for the first time in twelve years, but at the end of the regular season, it seemed that everything would pretty much remain the same. After the end of the regular calendar, it was said that both general manager Garth Snow and head coach Doug Weight would return next season. While fans seemed outraged that Snow was still on board, their frustration could be short-lived.
The Islanders may be in the market for a new GM with Snow, who is signed to a lengthy contract, remaining atop the organization’s managerial depth chart, according to a report.
Citing two sources, Chris Botta of SNY’s Point Blank reports Islanders co-owners Scott Malkin and Jon Ledecky are currently searching for a “top executive to join the Islanders’ hockey operations department.” According to Botta, Snow would stay on board as the club’s President, or he could be given another role in the front office.
Botta goes on to suggest that the Isles may wait until after the first-round of the playoffs to seek permission to interview potential candidates. On the potential list of candidates, Botta points out that Tampa Bay Assistant GM Julien BriseBois, Nashville AGM Paul Fenton and New Jersey AGM Tom Fitzgerald are expected to be on Malkin and Ledecky’s radar.
"One source said that Malkin and Ledecky will wait for the completion of the first round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs -- to see which executives become available -- before intensifying the process. A conversation with Maple Leafs GM Lou Lamoriello, whose son Chris is the Islanders' assistant GM, should also be of interest to the Islanders' owners if the legendary ex-Devils boss becomes available," writes Botta.
For the first time in a long while, the Islanders are contemplating a change at the general manager position. Snow was named GM of the club on July 18, 2006, the same day he announced his retirement as a netminder in the NHL. The Isles have missed the playoffs for the sixth time since John Tavares was drafted first overall in 2009. More importantly, it is the eighth time since Snow was hired as the team’s GM. That hurts...
Speaking of Tavares, the timing of a potential GM change may also have something to do with the future of the Islanders captain with the organization. Tavares is set to become an unrestricted free agent July 1, and no contract extension have been completed with months to go...
Tavares’ commitment to the franchise could be affected by a change in GM, which could entice him to stay on board for years to come. This is a plausible theory when you think of it.